My tree thinks it’s a real boy. Or, rather, my artificial pre-lit Christmas tree thinks it’s a formerly-live tree, judging by the way it’s shedding needles. It has Pinocchio Syndrome. I wish it would stop shedding, but as long as it doesn’t start telling lies and growing its nose, I guess we can get along.

I can’t really call this anthropomorphism, can I? Because I’m not ascribing to an inanimate thing the qualities of a living thing – I’m ascribing it the qualities of another inanimate thing that anthropomorphized itself. Is this secondary anthropomorphism? Meta-anthropomorphism? Inductive anthropomorphism?

If it hasn’t happened to you already, it has to me: the word “anthropomorphism” no longer has any meaning and is clearly not a real word. Another one bites the dust.


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